Christopher Durham named VP retail brands at Theory House
Christopher Durham has been named VP retail brands at Theory House, a Charlotte, N.C.-based marketing agency that has worked with major home improvement brands, such as Lowe’s, WW Grainger, Husqvarna and Gunk.
“Theory House is poised to take our next step in becoming the preeminent retail branding firm, and Christopher’s expertise and passion for building private brands aligns perfectly with our vision,” said Jim Cusson, president, Theory House. “His retail and store brand knowledge is well-respected throughout the industry, and the strategic skills he brings to the table round out our agency’s offerings, deepening our ability to help our client’s brands thrive.”
Durham has more than 20 years of experience under his belt in brand management, during which he created the My Private Brand website, which helps retailers turn private labels into consumer brands. His portfolio includes work for Office Depot, Best Buy, Food Lion, Hannaford and Lowe’s. For the latter, he developed and implemented brand strategies for a number of its private brands, including Blue Hawk, Style Selections, Project Source, Harbor Breeze and allen+roth.
“Theory House delivers tremendous strategic thinking and effective design to its clients," said Durham. "I’m looking forward to bolstering the team’s ability to help retailers develop and grow what I believe is one of their most underutilized assets — their private brand portfolio. Together we will provide world-class strategy, branding, design and execution by creating compelling, differentiated and profitable retail brands.”
Amid CEO transition, Masco posts sales gains
Taylor, Mich.-based Masco Corp.’s fourth-quarter net sales from continuing operations increased 9% to $2.0 billion, the company reported late Monday.
For the full year, net sales increased 9% to $8.2 billion.
Net income for the fourth quarter was $45 million, compared with a loss of $87 million in the same quarter last year. For the full year, net income swung to a profit of $272 million, compared with a loss of $114 million in 2012.
"We delivered a strong fourth quarter with improved top- and bottom-line growth across all five operating segments," said Masco`s president and CEO, Timothy Wadhams. "Sales growth was driven by new products and increased international sales that outperformed the Eurozone economies. In North America, we continued to benefit from the growth of new-home construction and improved repair and remodel activity and our operating leverage. Our strong fourth-quarter performance reflects our ongoing commitment to successfully deliver on our strategic initiatives, which include leveraging our brands, reducing our costs, improving our Installation and Cabinet segments and strengthening our balance sheet."
Keith Allman will succeed Wadhams as president and CEO upon his retirement Feb. 14.
"In 2014, we expect new-home construction and repair and remodel activity to show continued improvement in North America and internationally," said Allman. "Our focus will be to continue to maximize the benefits of this activity and maintain the positive momentum that started for us in the fourth quarter of 2012. We believe we are well positioned to grow our key brands and to gain market share in 2014. We will continue to focus on developing our innovation pipeline, improving our enterprise leverage, driving a high-performance culture and focusing on continuous improvement in all we do."
HD opens first of three DFCs
The Home Depot opened its new direct fulfillment center (DFC) in Locust Grove, Ga., a suburb of Atlanta.
The facility is the first of three new DFCs the company will open across the U.S. over the next two years. The new distribution centers will increase the number of orders the company can ship the day they are received, increasing the speed of delivery for HomeDepot.com orders. The company also said they will enable faster order picking and shipping through new warehouse management and material handling systems.
"This is a significant investment in our ability to say yes to customers with confidence," said Mark Holifield, senior vice president – Supply Chain. "Yes, you have access to our entire inventory to fulfill your order. Yes, you can expect a speedy delivery. And yes, you can rely on information updates about your delivery."
The DFCs will stock approximately 100,000 products, compared to about 35,000 products at a typical physical store. The Locust Grove DFC will have approximately 125 employees, and will eventually employ approximately 300 people. Future DFCs are scheduled to open in Perris, Calif. and Troy, Ohio.
When all three are rolled out, the new DFCs will add more than three million square feet and approximately 1,000 jobs to the retailer’s supply chain.